STATE AFFILIATE OF THE AMERICAN DENTAL ASSISTANTS ASSOCIATION
Dental Assistants Recognition Week
Dental Assistants Recognition Week will be held March 5-11, 2023 is designated by the American Dental Assistants Association as the perfect time to acknowledge and recognize the versatile, multi-talented member of the dental team. Dentists in the United States and Canada will celebrate by honoring their dental assistants for their various duties and helping them provide patients with quality dental care.
The theme for 2023 is "The heart of Dental Offices Through Education, Commitment and Safety" and acknowledges the growing importance of dentistry’s role in health care and the responsibilities of dental assistants.
Dental assistants possess special traits and talents that help the office run smoothly so patients receive the most comfortable care. During the month of March, DANB reminds us that those talents are:
Not all patients look forward to going to the dentist and some are right down scared. Dental assistants seem to have a knack of making them less stressful and no longer worried.
Have you ever thought about how many tasks you perform each day and sometimes it seems all at the same time.
Assistants are the dentists extra hands and eyes. Anticipating their need sometimes before they know they need it and haven’t asked for it.
Sharing your knowledge
Dental assistants are educated professionals and should feel proud when they can share some of that knowledge with their patients. What caused that oral problem and describe the treatment the dentist is recommending.
Helping that patients smile return to what it once was and could be again. Giving them more happiness and a happier life.
VALENTINE’S DAY & CHOCOLATE……THE PERFECT DUO
Over the years (and centuries), Valentine's Day has been a religious celebration, an ancient ritual day, and a commercial holiday. All that change means the meaning of Valentine's Day is truly whatever you want it to be: you can skip the celebrations completely, buy yourself some chocolate or flowers, or express your love and appreciation for the people in your life, whether they're co-workers, romantic partners, friends, or family members.
If you are looking forward to indulging on some Valentine treats, remember to indulge safely. For many people during this holiday, one of the most common connection is with chocolate and your teeth.
Now, as you walk up and down the candy aisles, we hope this gives you some ideas on what to choose.
The Oregon legislative is moving forward with House Bill 2996. As a fellow Dental Assistant, I, Bonnie Marshall, RDA, CDA, EFDA, EFODA, MADAA, BS; am asking you to write letters and submit your testimony in opposition to House Bill 2996 now.
As your ODAA President, I am sending this opposition letter on behalf of the Oregon Dental Assistants Association to the proper committee members.
Below you will find
to your representative
to repeal the bill.
(Click Here for Writing Tips)
OBD Open Testimony Session
February 13, 2023
3:00 PM PST
Citizen Participation Information
CLICK HERE to download a PDF of House Bill 2996
PDF of HB 2996 Informational Flier
When a person is trying to acquire a driver’s license, they must take a written test to prove that they understand the rules of the road and safety issues prior to operating a car. Taking away the exam would allow people on the street driving without important knowledge necessary to be a successful and safe driver.
Now imagine a patient coming to the dental office for treatment. The operator comes to the waiting room and announces that they are ready for Mrs. Jones. As the patient walks back to the exam room the operator explains what x-rays the operator will be exposing. The patient does not question the treatment, the patient does not question if the operator has the skills or knowledge to perform the task, the patient just allows the operator to move forward and expose their radiographs. Why? Because the patient trusts that the operator and the dentist would not do anything to harm them. I too, want to believe that I am safe while being treated in my dental office and that I will not come to any harm; doesn’t everyone?
It is our responsibility as dental professionals to have the knowledge to perform all tasks in a safe manner and to make sure that our patients are receiving quality care. Ionizing radiation is accumulative and over time can cause harm. That is why we have strict rules regarding tanning beds, and we encourage everyone to wear sunscreen while being in the sun.
That is why we as professional dental assistants are charged with protecting our patients.
Ask your patients what they think about having an operator exposing them to ionizing radiation, without proving that they have the knowledge to complete the task, without doing harm.
A dentist and hygienist must have a license, but an on-the-job-trained dental assistant only has rules to guide them. If a dental assistant is allowed to preform treatment under “General Supervision”; without a dentist or hygienist being in the building, shouldn’t the rules at least state that the dental assistant must have the knowledge and that knowledge can be proven by successful passage of the Dental Radiation Health and Safety Exam prior to exposing radiographs on patients?
It is the responsibility of every dental professional to protect patients against excessive radiation.
As a patient, educator and as a dental assistant since 1985, I feel that we have a duty to speak out against the removal of the Dental Radiation Health and Safety Exam NOW!
I would like to encourage each of you to read my letter to the committee and form your own letter (writing tips here) regarding the opposition to House Bill 2996.
Thank you for your time in this important matter.
Bonnie Marshall, RDA, CDA, EFDA, EFODA, MADAA, BS
OBD Mission Statement:
“The Mission of the Oregon Board of Dentistry is to promote quality oral health care and protect all communities in the State of Oregon by equitably regulating dental professionals. The authority and responsibilities are obtained in the Oregon Statues.”
ODAA Mission Statement:
“The Oregon Dental Assistant’s purpose is to promote the careers of dental professionals which will enable the working individuals to promote safe and quality patient care. This Association will represent the dental assistant professionals in legislative activities, mandated health and safety regulations and provide progressive continuing education. The Oregon Dental Assistants Association membership services will provide information, resource and reference materials, publications and other benefits.”
The Oregon Dental Assistants Association is aware that there is a shortage of qualified dental assistants in Oregon. The shortage is not going to change if the rules and standards set forth by the Oregon Board of Dentistry (OBD), Division 42 Dental Assisting, are eliminated.
The shortage is not going to change if the rules and standards set forth... are eliminated.
Eliminating the rules or standards will allow unqualified people to provide dental care.
The standards in Division 42 were approved by the Board of Dentistry and dental professionals, serving the field of dentistry by providing safe and quality patient care for over 50 years. Providing standards for Dental Assistants, OBD is promoting oral health and protecting all patients in the field of dentistry as well as promoting the Oregon Radiation Protection Service Agency, ODAA and OBD Mission Statements.
The world has just gone through three years of uncertainty for dental offices, dental professional and health care facilities. As the world becomes more stable, we as dental professionals need to assure our patients that dentistry will provide quality care in a safe environment. Taking away rules and standards will not make a difference in the shortage of dental assistants. Eliminating the rules or standards will allow unqualified people to provide dental care. As dental professionals we owe it to our patients to provide quality care safely.
As dental professionals we owe it to our patients to provide quality care safely.
Oregon Dental Assistants and Division 42 are under attack!
X-rays in a dental office are being performed by a qualified dental assistant under General Supervision. “General Supervision means that a supervising dentist has examined and diagnosed the patient and provided subsequent instructions to be performed by the assistive personnel but does not require that the dentist be physically present in the treatment facility.” Patients understand that they can trust the person that is exposing their radiographs and that that person has the proper qualifications to do so without harm. Division 42 rules provide the proper direction for dental assistants to prove that they are qualified to successfully perform tasks where patients could otherwise be harmed by improper treatment. Division 42 requirements for dental assistants provide clarification on what can be done by qualified dental assistants to perform tasks on patients safely.
The Radiology Health and Safety Exam is the foundation for the dental assisting rules in Division 42. Eliminating standards will weaken the quality of care and safety for Oregon patients.
The following certificates require that a dental assistant hold a Certification of Radiologic Proficiency (OAR 818-042-0060), complete a course of instruction approved by the Oregon Board of Dentistry, successfully pass an exam, and successfully prove competency by completing tasks clinically:
However, a few Oregon Dentists have placed House Bill 2996 for consideration and if the Bill passes it will eliminate the required Radiology Exam, therefore jeopardizing patient quality of care and safety.
The ODAA does not think that changing or eliminating any of the rules set forth in Division 42 will solve the shortage concerns. If the rules are eliminated, it will likely increase the shortage and allow unqualified dental assistants to perform tasks on patients.
The real shortage started due to COVID-19 and has continued to increase with the lack of support for retention and education as well as not providing a living wage for Dental Assistants.
The OBD will be having a hearing soon to address this topic and I want to encourage you to come and speak out against the removal of the Radiology Health and Safety Exam. Please take the time to read House Bill 2996 and write to your representative in Salem to repeal the bill.
Professional Dental Assistants are an important part of the dental team who encourage and embrace standards and education in order to provide quality safe patient care for their patients.
Bonnie Marshall, RDA, CDA, EFDA, EFODA, MADAA, BS
to your representative
to repeal the bill.
Date/Time to be announced.
May this Christmas bring you many reasons to smile and count your blessings.
We hope you are able to share this wonderful time of year with those near and dear to your heart.
Merry Christmas from
Oregon Dental Assistants Association
We humans are not the only ones who get fuzzy teeth from not brushing. Most people are diligent in caring for their own oral hygiene, however, good dental care for our pets is just as important. Brushing their teeth regularly can help prevent heart disease, liver and kidney problems, especially as they age. Dental disease is a leading cause of death in cats and greatly affects dogs too. According to PetMeds, periodontal disease is an epidemic condition in dogs and cats, affecting almost 90% of adult pets.
If you’ve never been in the habit of brushing your pet’s teeth, it’s never too late to start! Be sure to start gradually and try to make it fun. If you have a new puppy or kitten, it is a perfect time to start the habit of brushing their teeth.
TIPS TO FOLLOW:
A dog and cat's mouth contains lots of bacteria. If possible, wear gloves while brushing your pet’s teeth. If this isn’t possible, be sure to thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water after you are finished. Always rinse the toothbrush thoroughly before putting it away. Replace the toothbrush every three months, and if you have several pets, us a different toothbrush for each one.
Happy Thanksgiving, from everyone on the Oregon Dental Assistants Association, Executive Board. We are so grateful for each of you – our members.
The Oregon Dental Assistants Association is proud to announce scholarships available due to the kind contribution and generosity of the Mary Jenkins Garnes family.
During her career with the Oregon Dental Assistants Association and American Dental Assistants, Mary and colleagues lobbied for recognition of enhanced professional skills for dental assistants developed through training and continuing education.
For a more complete description of her advocacy at the state and national level, you can find information on our ODAA 2022 issue of our Newsbulletin within our Website, page 10.
Interested applicants may contact ODAA President Bonnie Marshall, CDA, EFDA, EFODA, MADAA at email@example.com should you have any questions about the application. More information may also be found on our website, under the education tab.
As a new year starts for the Oregon Dental Assistants Association, I would like to take a moment and personally welcome you to become part of this amazing group.
Our goals for this year are to become more visible through our updated Website, Newsbulletin, Facebook and soon to come Twitter page. Please just take a moment to connect with me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to hear from you!
If you are a member and you know someone who needs a class, please let them know that ODAA is planning on providing more education through Zoom classes every other month starting on November 29.
On November 29th Ginny Jorgensen will be presenting information about The Oregon Rules, Division 42 and how they affect Dental Assisting. Classes are free to attend if you are a current ODAA member.
I would personally like to offer Sealant classes for members during this next year. So, invite your dental assistant friends to become members and I will arrange a Sealant class for the cost of the ADAA/ODAA membership ($140.00).
Thank you for supporting Dental Assisting throughout Oregon by your continuous membership in the ADAA/ODAA.
I look forward to being your ODAA President for the year 20022-2023.
See you on our Social Media.
Bonnie Marshall, CDA, RDA, EFDA, EFODA, MADAA,BS
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